Wanted: Church Plant Pastor
One of the Kernersville’s largest churches is staffing up to extend its impact to another community beyond its South Main Street campus.
Lead Pastor Rob Decker said Triad Baptist Church will soon begin advertising and accepting resumes for its first Church Plant Pastor.
The position will lead efforts to recruit and nurture the pastor and volunteers required to open Triad’s first church plant about 20 miles away in 2019.
Decker said he and the church’s Executive Leadership Team (ELT) considered the new position the most critical addition for 2018 to reach people for Jesus Christ. The announcement comes, he said, as existing church growth in Kernersville and cultural trends call for a new approach.
“Why now? I think the best answer is we’re trying to think through Matthew 28:18-20 and the model of the Book of Acts where the Apostle Paul goes to a new city, preaches and teaches the word of God that people hear and get saved, then they become disciples and disciple others, and then he trains leaders, plants churches, and then moves onto the next city and repeats the process all over again,” Decker said.
“Unlike the satellite model where the plants are a branch of the mother church and can implode if the leader leaves (if they have become too tied to the leader’s personality), these church plants are meant to become self-sustaining churches and congregations in their own right,” he said.
“The idea is that the churches we plant will continue on after our initial three years of support is over, and they’ll be able to flourish and stand on their own,” Decker said. “Then the church plant pastor would repeat the process and organize a second church over the next three years.
“Having the church plant pastor on staff also means you don’t have to start over since they are recruiting the person to plant the church versus leaving to run it themselves.”
Based on some research he’s seen and extrapolated to Kernersville, Decker said that Triad and the town’s largest churches probably reach about 18 percent of the 24 percent looking for a church. What is lacking, he said, is outreach to those communities and people further away from the town who increasingly aren’t seeking out churches and Christ as they once were.
“I have already had several people tell me they would love to be part of planting a new church,” Decker said. “We would need about 50 people willing to go and serve there alongside the pastor of the new congregation for six months to a year.”
In addition to their faith in Jesus Christ and testimony, Decker said the new Church Plant Pastor will have at least three years of experience focusing on missions or church planting. They also will have had successfully led start-up ministries and recruited and trained volunteers, and possess excellent communications and organizational skills.
A seminary master’s level degree also is preferred (or someone currently enrolled in a master’s level program), he added, but eligible Church Plant Pastor candidates must have a least a bachelor’s degree from a Christian college and bible program.
While the Church Plant Pastor’s primary goal will be establishing new churches, Decker said they also will lead Triad’s Connect Groups small group ministry, and its Missions Team.
Triad’s Personnel Team (Executive Administrator Dennis Roberts, ELT Chairman Scott Williams and Finance Chair Phil Willis) will meet this month to select the other members who will be involved in the search.
“We’ll begin advertising the position this month and plan to begin interviews in late February and early March with a selection to follow,” Roberts said. “Ideally, we would like to have the position filled by May or June based on candidate availability.”
Internal candidates can also apply, Decker said, but must meet the same qualifications as external candidates in the open-interview process.
The eventual Church Plant Pastor selected will report to Decker. While Triad Baptist has financially supported church-planting activities in other states and countries by missionaries, Decker said the church it plants in 2019 somewhere in the region would be the first it has organized, funded, and opened.
“This step is new to us, so many aspects of this move and what is required aren’t fully clear now, but will become clear over time,” Decker said. “We’re excited about this new direction in the life of our church.”
Given the church’s giving, stewardship and budget, Decker doesn’t expect the new pastor or direction to have any appreciable impact on the church’s budget or change such long-range plans as building a new sanctuary to replace the Worship Center/Gym or other plans for its campus.
“Financially, we’re in a very good position,” Decker said. “I think having a sustainable church plant in three years is a worthy goal. The key, as always, is to seek and get the right man called by God.”